Editorial Reviews for this title:
“ Tearing Down the Wall of Sound is a remarkable book about, among other things, fame, obsession, genius, money and madness. It paints the fullest picture yet of a man who, whether creating some of the greatest pop music of all time, or destroying the lives of those closest to him, seems to have existed in a continuous state of mental agitation. The Phil Spector story still awaits its ending. In the meantime, this is the definitive study of the man, and the myth that engulfed him.” —Sean O’Hagan, The Observer (U.K.)
With a number-one hit at age eighteen, a millionaire with his own label by twenty-two, and proclaimed by Tom Wolfe “The First Tycoon of Teen,” Phil Spector owned pop culture, his roster as a producer including the Ronettes, the Righteous Brothers, Ike and Tina Turner, the Beatles, then John Lennon and George Harrison, as well as Leonard Cohen and the Ramones. But in the spring of 2007, he stands trial for murder.
A spectacularly troubled genius, Spector created with the “Wall of Sound” music never heard before, from “Be My Baby” and “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’” to “Imagine” and “My Sweet Lord.” He suffered poorly the quantum shifts in rock and roll—not to mention the loss of his friends Lenny Bruce and John Lennon—growing ever more reclusive and abusive. By the turn of this century, however, he was not only sober but also attracted to new bands who knew his reputation, good and bad, all too well. Then, in February 2003, he leapt back into the headlines when Lana Clarkson, an actress, was found dead by gunshot in his Los Angeles mansion.
Only weeks before, Spector had granted Mick Brown the first major interview he’d given in twenty-five years—the seed for this definitive, mesmerizing biography of a man who first became a king, then something else altogether.
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